Swinney says Bulldogs demand, deserve Tigers' full attention, maximum effort

'We have to make sure we've got our act together and are ready to play at a high level'

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney encourages his players as they run onto the field in the third quarter.

Photo by Nathan Gray

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney encourages his players as they run onto the field in the third quarter.

When Dabo Swinney walked off Clemson's practice field Thursday evening after what he described as a lackluster and unfocused effort, he had one good reason to feel ill with his team.

In a word: Georgia.

The Bulldogs, he said, demand and deserve the best the Tigers have to give.

"Georgia's a great football team," Swinney said. "There's good reason why a lot of people are picking them to win the national championship. They've got a great quarterback and as good of backs as we're going to see as long as I'm at Clemson."

Swinney knows the Bulldogs' sophomore tandem of Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall well.

Clemson recruited both running backs, and both North Carolinians came down to Georgia vs. Clemson decisions, capped by high-drama announcements that had the fans of both schools on the edge of their seats.

"Those two guys are really, really good players," Swinney said. "Everybody talks about Gurley, but Marshall is also outstanding. And to go with them, they have good skills players and a veteran offensive line."

Swinney says he's expecting the Tigers to be challenged by Georgia's defense, as well.

"Defensively, they've got some unknowns for us," he said. "But they've got good players. People want to say they're thin on defense, but they've got a lot of guys who've started a lot of games. We've got a big challenge ahead of us."

Swinney said last year's Georgia-Alabama down-to-the-wire duel for the SEC championship should be enough to make sure there are no more attention lapses by Clemson players between now and next Saturday.

"Alabama was the No. 1 defense in the country last year, and y'all watched that game - I mean, Georgia kind of had their way," Swinney said. "It was toe to toe all night.

"This is a huge, huge challenge for our team, both offensively and defensively. Because they've got good players. They're where they are, and deservedly so.

"We have to make sure we've got our act together and are ready to play at a high level."

© 2013 OrangeAndWhite.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Comments » 5

TrevorT writes:

Make Gurley and Marshall see the error of their ways. BEAT GEORGIA.

TrevorT writes:

By the way, where is everyone? It's a week till gameday. Let's start hearing some love for our tigers on O&W.

columbiabill writes:

in response to TrevorT:

By the way, where is everyone? It's a week till gameday. Let's start hearing some love for our tigers on O&W.

Hey, I am kind of where the tigers were in Thursday's practice, not putting forth my best effort, maybe just thinking about Georgia but not fully preparing. Now I have to dial it up a notch, get my flag out front of the house, check the portable grill, make sure and practice putting up the tent until it is perfectly timed, get my routine in perfect shape for Saturday, and finally put on the big boy pants. I'll be ready come Saturday.

Clemorange writes:

I've already got the tent, chairs, beers, everything except food and ice. I'm ready to help shake the south land. Georgia is going home with their tail between their legs. Clemson by 17 or more. Remember it's solid orange!

TrevorT writes:

Now we're talking!

Share your thoughts

Comments are the sole responsibility of the person posting them. You agree not to post comments that are off topic, defamatory, obscene, abusive, threatening or an invasion of privacy. Violators may be banned. Click here for our full user agreement.

Comments can be shared on Facebook and Yahoo!. Add both options by connecting your profiles.

Features